|Publication number||US6931899 B2|
|Application number||US 10/643,719|
|Publication date||Aug 23, 2005|
|Filing date||Aug 18, 2003|
|Priority date||Aug 16, 2002|
|Also published as||CA2495792A1, CA2495792C, EP1545809A1, EP1545809A4, EP1545809B1, US20040096538, WO2004016369A1|
|Publication number||10643719, 643719, US 6931899 B2, US 6931899B2, US-B2-6931899, US6931899 B2, US6931899B2|
|Inventors||Edward Goff, Tom Motsenbocker|
|Original Assignee||Machine Solutions, Inc.|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (12), Referenced by (26), Classifications (13), Legal Events (6)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application claims the benefit of provisional application No. 60/404,074, filed Aug. 16, 2002.
A portion of the disclosure of this patent document contains material which is subject to copyright protection. The copyright owner has no objection to the facsimile reproduction by anyone of the patent document or the patent disclosure, as it appears in the US Patent and Trademark Office patent file or records, but otherwise reserves all copyright rights whatsoever.
The present invention relates, generally, to material forming systems, apparatus and processes. More particularly, the invention relates to a swaging system, apparatus and method. Most particularly, the invention relates to a system, apparatus and method for swaging one or more articles such as marker bands at precise locations on a tubular structure such as a medical catheter. The techniques of the invention can also be used in other fields such as tube joining, cable joining, sealing, bullet manufacturing, and other medical, industrial, commercial apparatus and processes.
2. Background Information
Swaging is a forming process for use with hollow or solid material or articles, particularly metallic material or articles. Examples of hollow material or articles include tubes, casings, catheters, needles and the like. Examples of solid materials include rods, bars and wires. Swaging is commonly used to reduce or increase the diameter of material or articles, to create particular geometric shapes or profiles of material or articles, to join or fasten material or articles, or to seal or finish material or articles. Swaging is typically accomplished by placing material or articles, most commonly tubes, rods, bars or wires, inside a die that applies compressive force. Typically, the force is applied by radially hammering. The radial hammering may be accompanied by rotating the die or the workpiece. Additionally, a mandrel may be placed inside articles such as tubes during compression. The inner and outer diameters of the material or articles may be of the same or differing shapes. Swaging is typically conducted cold, or at room temperature, but may be conducted hot. Swaging may be accomplished by a rotary process, a stationary spindle process, or a die closing process. Other known forming processes include crimping and pointing.
Examples of existing swaging technology includes a rotary swager provided by Torrington Swaging and Vaill End Forming Machinery. Inc. of Waterbury, Conn. The rotary swager has a motorized spindle which is slotted, in order to hold backers and the dies. The spindle passes the backers over the rollers to deliver a blow to the dies. In this rotary swaging process, a swaging head is fixed. The dies close over a work piece and form the material. When the backers are in-between two roll positions, the centrifugal forces will move them apart, making it possible for the die to open, while the dies are rotating around the workpiece. The operation continues several times and the result is a reduced round cross section of tube, bar or wire.
A stationary spindle swager, also provided by Torrington Swager has a spindle and dies which are fixed. They do not rotate around the workpiece. Instead, the head rotates. This type of machine is used to obtain cross-sectioned shapes other than round, such as triangular, square, polygonal.
A die closing swage, further provided by Torrington Swager has dies which are moved radially by a die closing device and by backers while the operation is being performed. A spindle is motorized and rotating. This type of machine is used to obtain grooves or recesses for short step transition angles or for assembly of large parts on cables or rods without having to remove the dies between operations.
Numerous medical devices exist for accessing and working within the vasculature and other internal systems of humans and other animals for minimally invasive diagnostic and therapeutic purposes. Examples of such devices include introducers, guidewires, catheters, and stents. They are typically thin, elongated structures which are inserted into arteries, veins, or body cavities through small punctures in the skin. After initial insertion, the insertable medical devices, and in particular certain portions or aspects of the devices such as balloons, blades, tips, drug delivery systems, are guided to desired locations in the body, such as the heart or other organs, by radioscopic or flouroscopic visualization. In such visualization processes, a medical practitioner views the medical device or a portion thereof in the body through a screen or other monitoring device. Visualization is enhanced or even made possible by a radiopaque marker, typically a band or series of bands of a predetermined geometry and disposed at a predetermined position(s) on the insertable medical device or portion thereof. Marker bands have been placed on insertable medical devices by existing swaging devices and processes.
Existing technology is believed to have limitations and shortcomings. For these and other reasons, a need exists for the present invention.
All US patents and patent applications, and all other published documents mentioned anywhere in this application are hereby incorporated by reference in their entirety.
The present invention provides a swaging system, apparatus and method which are practical, reliable, accurate and efficient, and which are believed to fulfil a need and to constitute an improvement over the background technology.
The swaging system, apparatus and process is useful for swaging metal bands to polymeric tubular structures in a precise, substantially automated fashion. In particular, the swaging system, apparatus and process is beneficial for swaging marker bands to medical catheters, guidewires, stents and the like. In general however, the swaging system, apparatus and process may be used for forming or processing hollow or solid material or articles, particularly those constructed of malleable metals, such as tubes, casings, catheters, needles, rods, bars and wires, to reduce or increase the diameter, to create particular geometric shapes or profiles, to join or fasten, or to seal or finish such material or articles.
In one embodiment, the invention provides a swager for swaging marker bands to a medical catheter, comprising:
a. an article input mechanism, the article input mechanism having a first input roller assembly for receiving and conveying an article, a first sensor for detecting a predetermined aspect of the article, a second input roller assembly for receiving and conveying the article, a positioning roller assembly for precisely aligning the article with respect to the swaging head, and a second sensor all constructed and arranged in a streamwise orientation;
b. a radial compression swaging head with a central swaging aperture, the swaging head being aligned and communicatively coupled with the input mechanism to receive an input article from the article input mechanism and to swage the article, the swaging head being rotatable and including:
c. an output mechanism aligned and communicatively coupled with the swaging head to receive the swaged article.
In another aspect, the invention provides a swaging apparatus for swaging a marker band to a medical catheter, comprising:
a. a unitary die plate including:
b. a closing plate pivotally coupled via the pivot points, and wherein the apparatus is rotatable.
The features, advantages, benefits and objects of the invention will become clear to those skilled in the art by reference to the following description, claims and drawings.
The drawing Figures show preferred embodiments of the swaging system or swager 10, components thereof, and process of present invention. The swager system 10 is described below first in terms of its major structural elements and then in terms of its secondary structural and/or functional elements which cooperate to perform the preferred swaging function. The embodiments of the invention described are intended to be illustrative and not to be exhaustive or limit the invention to the exact forms disclosed. The embodiments are chosen and described so that persons skilled in the art will be able to understand the invention and the manner and process of making and using it.
The swaging system, apparatus and process is useful for connecting one material element, a swaged element, to another material element, a base element. In particular, it is useful for swaging bands, for example metal bands, to tubular structures, for example polymeric tubular structures, in a precise, substantially automated fashion. In particular, the swaging system, apparatus and process is beneficial for swaging marker bands to medical catheters, guide wires, stents and the like. In general however, the swaging system, apparatus and process may be used for forming or processing hollow or solid material or articles, particularly those constructed of malleable metals, such as tubes, casings, catheters, needles, rods, bars and wires, to reduce or increase the diameter, to create particular geometric shapes or profiles, to join or fasten, or to seal or finish such material or articles.
Referring also to
The input handling assembly 49 includes an input guide 58, a first infeed roller assembly 60, a second infeed roller assembly 68, a positioning roller assembly 77, a first sensor 95, and a second sensor 96. The input guide 58 is a rectilinear block of a predetermined length with a coextensive linear guide slot 59 in the top surface, which has a V-shaped profile. The input guide block 58 is preferably constructed of a low friction polymeric material. The input guide block 58 is shown connected to the top deck 42, although it may alternatively be connected to the housing 38 or other elements of the base unit 11, either directly or indirectly by means known in the art.
In use, the articles to be swaged are placed by an operator or user by hand, or otherwise, in the guide slot 59 of the guide 58. The input guide 58 supports and aligns the articles to be swaged and permits them to be pulled along with low friction. Referring to
The first sensor 95 is disposed a predetermined distance upstream from the second infeed roller assembly 68. The first sensor 95 senses the forward or leading tip of the catheter 15 as it passes being transported by the first infeed roller assembly 60.
The second infeed roller assembly 68 is disposed downstream from the first infeed roller assembly 60, a predetermined distance therefrom. The second infeed roller assembly 68 engages the catheter 15 delivered by the first infeed roller assembly 60 and linearly transports it to the positioning roller assembly 77. The second infeed roller assembly 68 includes a rotatable roller 69 having a horizontally disposed shaft 71 rotabably connected in mounting block 70. Polymeric roller 69 also preferably has a V-shaped slot 74 which is vertically and horizontally aligned with the upstream guide slot 65 of the first infeed roller assembly roller 61 to receive the conveyed catheter body 15. Block 70 is connected to the housing 38 and other elements of the base unit 11 described below by a conventional bracket, but such connection may be varied as is known in the art. The shaft 71 extends out an opposite side of the block 70 and pulleys 72 and 73 are connected to it. Pulley 73 is communicatively connected to drive means preferably by a flexible belt (not shown for clarity) as is described in detail below. Pulley 72 is communicatively connected to pulley 64 of first infeed guide roller assembly 60 and provides synchronized rotation thereto.
The positioning roller assembly 77 is disposed downstream from the second infeed roller assembly 68, a predetermined distance therefrom. It receives the catheter 15 from the second infeed roller assembly 68 and linearly transports the catheter 15 downstream, past the second sensor 96 a/b, to the swaging head 50. The positioning roller assembly 77 includes a pair of rotatable horizontal rollers 78 a and b, each of which has a horizontally disposed parallel shafts 80 a and b rotabably connected in mounting block 81, and a pair of rotatable vertical rollers 79 a and b, each of which is has a vertically disposed, parallel shafts 83 a and b connected in mounting block 85. Polymeric rollers 78 a/b and 79 a/b also preferably have V-shaped slots which is vertically and horizontally aligned with each other and with the upstream guide slot 74 of the second infeed roller assembly roller 68 to receive the conveyed catheter body 15. Blocks 81 and 85 are connected to the housing 38 and other elements of the base unit 11 described below by a conventional bracket, but such connection may be varied as is known in the art. The shaft 71 extends out an opposite side of the block 70 and pulleys 72 and 73 are connected to it. Pulley 73 is communicatively connected to drive means preferably by a flexible belt (not shown for clarity) as is described in detail below. Pulley 72 is communicatively connected to pulley 64 of first infeed guide roller assembly 60 and provides synchronized rotation thereto.
The second sensor 96 a/b is disposed a predetermined distance downstream from the positioning roller assembly 77 and a predetermined distance upstream from the swaging head 50. The second sensor 96 senses the forward or leading tip of the catheter 15 as it passes being transported by the positioning roller assembly 77.
Referring also to
Referring also to
As is best shown in
Referring also to
Referring also to
A distal mounting block 151 is shown in
In use, to actuate the swager head 50 to close the radially move engagement surfaces 119 to close aperture 112 for both band grasping or band swaging purposes power is supplied to motor 160 which rotates drive shaft 162 (counter clockwise as viewed from FIG. 11 and clockwise as viewed from FIGS. 12 and 13). Clamp collar 168 turns with actuator shaft 162 and pulls attached actuator cable 173. This causes attached connection block to pull die 100 base 108 counter clockwise (as viewed from the proximal or input end (FIG. 11)). The rotating die base 108 applies force on the die segments 107 a-f via their respective radial flexures 109 and the die segments 107 pivot around shafts 148 in apertures 120. Tile structure and configuration of the pivoting die segments 107 a-f yield radial inward movement in their respective swaging surfaces 119 a-f. The radial force is adjustable depending upon function, for a grasping force for marker band positioning, or a swaging force for marker band impacting, and material specifications. Additionally, the swaging head 50 may be stationary or rotating during die plate actuation. In a grasping mode, for example where the swaging head 50 is holding a marker hand 13 or 14 while the catheter 15 is advanced to position the band on the catheter, the swaging head 50 is stationary. In a swaging mode, the swaging head is rotated while the swaging surfaces 119 are simultaneously pulsed and released to uniformly impact marker bands about their periphery.
Referring also to
Although the system, apparatus and method has been described in connection with the field of medical devices, and in particular, marker bands, it can readily be appreciated that it is not limited solely to such field, and can be used in other fields including, but not limited to aviation, electronics, industrial processes, computers, telecommunications ammunition, and the like.
The descriptions above and the accompanying drawings should be interpreted in the illustrative and not the limited sense. While the invention has been disclosed in connection with an embodiment or embodiments thereof it should be understood by those skilled in the art that there may be other embodiments which fall within the scope of the invention as defined by the claims. Where a claim, if any, is expressed as a means or step for performing a specified function it is intended that such claim be construed to cover the corresponding structure, material, or acts described in the specification and equivalents thereof including both structural equivalents and equivalent structures, material-based equivalents and equivalent materials, and act-based equivalents and equivalent acts.
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|U.S. Classification||72/18.1, 72/402, 29/283.5|
|International Classification||A61F2/84, A61M25/00, B21J9/06, B21D39/04|
|Cooperative Classification||Y10T29/53996, B21D39/048, A61F2250/0098, A61M25/0108, A61M25/0009|
|Jul 20, 2005||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: MACHINE SOLUTIONS, INC., ARIZONA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:GOFF, EDWARD;MOTSENBOCKER, THOMAS;REEL/FRAME:016548/0683;SIGNING DATES FROM 20050701 TO 20050714
|Jan 23, 2009||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|Nov 22, 2011||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: THE PRIVATEBANK AND TRUST COMPANY, ILLINOIS
Free format text: SECURITY AGREEMENT;ASSIGNOR:MACHINE SOLUTIONS, INC.;REEL/FRAME:027269/0729
Effective date: 20111121
|Apr 8, 2013||REMI||Maintenance fee reminder mailed|
|Aug 22, 2013||SULP||Surcharge for late payment|
Year of fee payment: 7
|Aug 22, 2013||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 8